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by Mike O'Mara | Feb 6, 2020 | Home Maintenance tips
We tend to see a lot of rainfall this time of year here in San Diego County, so it’s important to ensure your home is adequately protected. There are a lot of simple steps you can take to ensure you stay as safe as possible, as well as avoid expensive and time-consuming repairs down the line. Follow some of the guidelines provided below, and be sure to reach out to our team for all of your chimney- and fireplace-related needs. Weststar Chimney is ready to serve you every step of the way!
Unclog Your Gutters
If you don’t have sturdy gutters on your home, then it might be time to invest in some new ones. It may put a small dent in your bank account, but trust us – water-related damages are much more costly to address! If your gutters are in good shape, then get out your ladder and some gloves and ensure they are totally unclogged, so that water has a clear pathway off of your roof and away from your home. Or, if you’re not up to take on the task yourself, call on a professional to help you out.
What happens if you neglect this maintenance? Water will collect on your roof, causing all kinds of damage, and you’ll be experiencing leaks and interior and exterior home damage before you know it. It could also lead to water pooling near your home, causing a lot of issues throughout your foundation. The weaker this area becomes, the more likely you are to have structural issues down the line.
Check For Rot
The more moisture you have in your home, the more likely you are to experience rotting throughout your woodwork, which can eventually lead to structural damage and mold accumulation. Be sure to look for rot regularly and have any affected areas replaced as soon as possible. Then, take necessary measures to ensure these areas are not affected by water again down the line.
Is Your Roof In Good Shape?
Mold or leaky spots in your roof indicate that some work needs to be completed. It’s important to regularly replace broken or missing shingles, and be sure to invest in new roofing materials, as needed, to ensure your entire home stays safer and in the best shape possible. Rainy weather can be very hard on your roof, and you don’t want to discover leaks amidst a heavy downpour. Take action now – you’ll be happy you crossed this maintenance off of your list early!
Seal Your Windows & Doors
Window frames and door frames are especially vulnerable spots when heavy rains begin to fall. As various parts of your home settle, expand, and contract over time, these areas tend to break down the quickest, and you’ll notice water seeping through if they aren’t properly maintained. Keep an open eye for stains, rotting wood, mold, and other signs that moisture is making a presence. Then, seal them up as necessary.
Inspect Your Landscaping
Are there any places in your yard where water is more prone to collect and cause damage? Consider re-doing weak spots in your landscaping, and check that your sidewalks and driveway are appropriately sloped so that water flows away from your property, rather than towards it. These projects are a little more expensive to take on, but don’t compare at all to the costs of home repairs down the line should water gain easy access to your home.
Waterproof Your Masonry
Is your chimney sealed and protected? If not, then it’s time to call in some experts. Your brickwork and mortar are really absorbent, and they will soak in a lot of water if left to the elements. Water breaks down these materials quickly, and all too often people use store-bought paints and sealers to try and protect them. Unfortunately, these products trap the pre-absorbed moisture inside with no way of escaping, meaning your structure will continue to crumble, crack, and deteriorate.
Rely on our team to get the job done right with services and products you can rely on for the long haul. We’ll cover your masonry will specially formulated sealants that offer reliable protection, while still remaining vapor-permeable. This means no water will get in and anything stuck inside can easily escape over time.
Invest In Replacement Chimney Parts
Unfortunately, your masonry isn’t the only area of your chimney that can be affected by water. If your flashing, chimney cap, or top-sealing damper was installed incorrectly or if they are facing some type of damage, then it’s likely that water will pool and create rust and decay. These components can work wonders at protecting your home, but they have to be in good shape and set up right in order to do an effective job.
Let us look things over, and we can repair or replace parts, as necessary. Once everything is back in order, you can rest easier knowing you did everything possible to prevent further damage throughout your home.
We’re Here For You!
Ready to work with the best in the area? Our CSIA Certified Chimney Sweeps are just a quick phone call away. Reach out now, so you can put your mind at ease throughout these rainy months ahead.
by Mike O'Mara | Nov 5, 2019 | Fireplace doors
Has a friend or neighbor recommended that you invest in some fireplace doors? Or maybe you’ve been considering adding them, but don’t know much about what they actually do. Regardless of your situation, you’re likely facing a lot of questions that you’ll need answered before making any investments.
Fortunately, we’re here to help you every step of the way. Weststar Chimney Sweeps has been serving the San Diego area for 20 years now, and we pride ourselves on offering knowledgeable, honest, and in-depth evaluations every time you hire us for the job. If you need help buying and installing your new fireplace door, don’t hesitate to reach out today!
Why Do I Need A Fireplace Door?
There are many reasons to install a fireplace door. First of all, they add a level of safety to your space. They help to keep kids and pets out of the firebox, they stop sparks from flying out and landing on your rugs or furniture, and they prevent any hot or burning logs from rolling out of the fireplace and landing in your living room.
Fireplace doors also help to enhance the aesthetic appeal of your home. They cover up any messy ash and half-used wood piles for when your fireplace isn’t in use, and many can be customized to your unique style preferences. You’ll have a personalized piece that guests and family members are sure to rave about for years!
Is your fireplace causing your energy bills to skyrocket? Whether you have cold downdrafts entering your living room in the winter or you struggle with all of your air-conditioned air escaping in the summer, an open fireplace can cause your HVAC system to work much harder than necessary, which means more money coming out of your pocket every month. This is less than ideal, but a fireplace door can do a much more effective job at keeping your home more comfortable than a throat damper or chimney cap.
All in all, you’ll get the style, efficiency, and peace of mind you deserve when you invest in fireplace doors for your home. Take the next step today by reaching out to our team to explore your options!
What Style Options Are Out There?
Now, when you choose to work with the crew at Weststar Chimney Sweeps, you get to explore a lot of choices when it comes to finding the perfect door for your home. We offer custom-designed models from Fireplace Door Guy, so you can choose which style would look best with your set-up. We’ll also measure your fireplace to guarantee an exact fit. From something plain and simple to something more ornate and intricate, we have an option for every preference.
Can I Install The Door Myself?
In today’s technological world, it’s easier than ever to find do-it-yourself tutorials online for just about anything. Well, when it comes to your fireplace, we encourage our customers to rely on CSIA certified technicians to perform any and all of their installation work. This guarantees you get the best results possible for your appliance, and it ensures your family stays as safe as possible, too.
Not to mention, even a minor mishap can lead to some pretty big problems, all of which are very costly to fix. In the long run, you’ll be much better off trusting an expert from the very start.
What’s Better? A Door Or A Screen?
Now, fireplace screens are another alternative when it comes to keeping your household better protected. Screens are less expensive and they can play a big part in keeping your living space more comfortable. That being said, they may not do as effective a job as a fireplace door, and they tend to allow small sparks or embers into your space from time to time.
Don’t get us wrong – screens are a great option for many, and they can contribute a lot to the look and function of your fireplace. Along with this, they may not block as much heat as a fireplace door would. It’s all about finding what works best for your set up.
Or, if you want heightened efficiency, while keeping little ones and pets as safe as possible, why not invest in both? Doors serve a big purpose, but they get very hot since they are directly in front of the fire. By placing one of our folding screens in front of them, you ensure no little paws or fingers risk getting burned. And when the fire is out, just set it aside and out of the way. It’s as easy as that!
I Live In San Diego County – Who Can Help With This Process?
If you live in San Diego County, we encourage you to give the team here at Weststar Chimney Sweeps a call now. We serve countless cities including Alpine, Bonita, Rancho Santa Fe, Vista, Lakeside, Lemon Grove, and more, and we would be happy to set you up right before the holidays arrive in full swing.
Our team is CSIA Certified, so you can bet we know our stuff, and we are members of the NCSG, ensuring we stay informed and up-to-date on any advances in the industry. We pride ourselves on always putting you – the customer – first, and we offer honest and in-depth evaluations. Combine all that with our A+ BBB rating and our long list of positive customer reviews, and you’ve got a team you can trust in for the long haul.
Ready to get started? Reach out today!
by Mike O'Mara | Oct 8, 2019 | Dryer Vent Cleaning
Here at Weststar Chimney Sweeps, we always urge homeowners to invest in regular chimney inspections, sweepings, and maintenance. We obviously pride ourselves on our chimney services (It’s right there in our name!), but we want San Diego citizens to be aware of another extremely important service we offer, as well – dryer vent cleaning.
Like chimney inspections, dryer vent cleanings should be performed once every year to ensure your home stays as safe as possible. Along with this, yearly maintenance keeps your appliance running more efficiently, and it could save you on energy costs, too! Learn more about all of this below, then call right away to book an appointment with our experts. We’re always happy to serve.
Avoiding Fires & Carbon Monoxide
Dryer fires are much more common than people realize and most are triggered by clogged up vents overheating. Lint is very flammable and, when your appliance cannot exhaust, it will reach dangerous temperatures. Before you know it, all the debris inside your flue could ignite, spreading flames throughout your laundry room and household.
Fires cause significant amounts of damage, and they could result in death or injury for those inside of the home, as well. This is one area where you don’t want to take any chances. Trust us – a cleaning now is a lot more affordable than repair work later.
Another danger associated with clogged up vents is the risk of carbon monoxide entering the home. Carbon monoxide has no color or odor, and it is highly poisonous, causing multiple deaths every single year. When your appliance cannot effectively vent out vapors and fumes, you run the risk of exposure to this gas, which is why regular cleanings are so important!
Better Performance From Your Appliance
Dryer vent cleanings will also enable your appliance to perform as efficiently as possible. If you’re being forced to run multiple drying cycles before your laundry is completely dry, then it’s time to call in a professional. Many assume their dryer is not working when all they require is a simple cleaning to get back into action.
Lower Energy Bills
Finally, consider the savings you could experience by operating a more efficient appliance. Running cycle after cycle not only takes up your day and causes frustration… it costs you money month-to-month, too! Don’t throw cash down the drain when an easy fix is just a phone call away. Our techs would be happy to lend a hand!
Our Team Is Experienced & Ready To Serve
The crew at Weststar Chimney Sweeps is one you can trust for the long haul. We’ve maintained an A+ rating with the BBB for 18 years now, and we continue to renew our CSIA certifications, ensuring we stay up-to-date on any advancements or new technologies introduced into our field. If you are ready to work with the best, don’t wait any longer. Reach out to us today!
by Mike O'Mara | Sep 24, 2019 | CSIA certified
Here at Weststar Chimney Sweeps, there is one thing we take seriously – our education. That’s why we’ve earned and maintained certification with the CSIA. How does this set us apart? Well, in an industry that is ever-evolving and always exploring new technologies, staying up-to-date and top of it all is a must! It’s qualifications like these that ensure homeowners stay safer with every passing year, and we are proud to be associated with such a reputable organization.
Learn more about the CSIA below, then count on us for your inspections, sweepings, and repair work – we’re equipped to handle it all.
Taking Your Safety Seriously
The CSIA is a nonprofit that has been around since 1983, and it is devoted to educating the public and certifying sweeps all throughout the country. Leaders of this organization regularly go out into the community to share safety tips and fireplace knowledge, and they’ve made it their mission to ensure sweeps across the nation are knowledgeable and well-informed, as well.
The great part about the CSIA is that they require their sweeps to regularly renew their certification. If you don’t recertify every three years, you lose your status! This ensures the team you are working with isn’t missing out on anything.
To top it off, the CSIA is all about ethics. Each sweep must sign a code of ethics that requires them to use their knowledge to keep their customers safer and to be honest in all of their evaluations.
So, what does it take to earn one’s certification? Well, technicians are given training materials that they must study and get down pat, after which they are required to take a test to ensure they know it all when it comes to your fireplace and chimney. The CSIA also hosts workshops and training sessions for team members to participate in. All in all, getting the knowledge and understanding necessary to be the best they can be isn’t a problem for a CSIA certified sweep.
All in all, it is no easy process. It takes training, studying, and dedication to earn these qualifications, but it is nothing our team can’t handle. If you’re eager to work with a crew that can get you taken care of – no matter what – then schedule an appointment with Weststar Chimney Sweeps today!
It’s Time To Get Your Inspection Completed
One thing the CSIA recommends is investing in annual chimney inspections. This practice will keep your system functioning appropriately throughout the holiday season, which is when most people put their fireplace to use. You and your family members will stay safer and cozier, and you’ll get the efficiency you’re hoping for, as well.
If you’re ready to get your inspection on the books, call today! Our busy season is approaching fast, and soon it will become quite challenging to find a time slot that works well with your calendar. Our team is ready and willing to ensure your chimney is free of dirt, debris, creosote, and any damages. Reach out now, and we can set something up.
by Mike O'Mara | Jul 31, 2018 | Dryer Vent Maintenance
Are you overdue for a dryer vent cleaning? You’re not alone, and many homeowners underestimate the importance of investing in this regular maintenance. Unfortunately, this type of neglect can lead to some very serious and life-threatening issues down the line! Give the team at Weststar Chimney Sweeps a call right away, so we can help you out. It’s a decision you won’t regret!
Not A Do-It-Yourself Job
So, why can’t a homeowner attempt the cleaning process themselves? Well, they can, but they aren’t likely going to get as good of results. To properly clean out your vents, you need a wide range of special equipment, and our sweeps have gone through extensive training to ensure they use everything correctly. Simply taking the vents apart and vacuuming them with an extension hose won’t get the process done completely, and you’ll still be facing many hazardous risks!
The tools we use ensure every nook and cranny is taken care of, and we guarantee we can get around even the tightest turns and twists quickly and effectively. We’ll also check all the connections, so you’ll know you’re getting the most from your appliance after we’ve looked everything over. There’s no reason not to get an appointment on the books today!
Now, you may be wondering why investing in this service is such an important step in home care. First of all, dirty and clogged up vents are known for triggering thousands of fires across the United States every single year. This results in multiple deaths, hundred of injuries, and thousands upon thousands of dollars worth of damage.
If the heat and fumes from your dryer cannot vent properly, they’ll build up and catch the flammable lint on fire. With all that extra kindling around, it takes no time for this fire to spread, and you may lose an enormous amount depending on how slowly or quickly flames get extinguished. It’s definitely not worth taking any chances, especially when it comes to keeping your loved ones safer.
Along with this, you’ll be more likely to face carbon monoxide exposure, which can be deadly when not addressed in a prompt fashion. Carbon monoxide is especially dangerous to those without carbon monoxide detectors throughout their home, as the gas itself is colorless, odorless, and tasteless. Without anything to alert people within the property, they’ll have no way to indicate whether or not they’ve been exposed! The only hope would be that symptoms were caught in time, giving them a chance to get out of the home and call for help, but this is a risky situation, indeed.
Count On Our Team
Ensure you have clear pathways for fumes and vapors to escape by calling in our CSIA certified crew right away. We’ll give you the peace of mind you deserve, so you can rest easier all year long! Contact our staff, and we’ll get an appointment on the books. There’s no time to waste!